Kurayami Monogatari

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Sayaka Sasaki – Daybreaker June 16, 2014

Filed under: Sayaka Sasaki — solarblade @ 5:00 am

daybreaker

Track Listing

  1. Break your world
  2. BLAZE MOMENT ~Guren Jouka~
  3. Tsuioku no Scarlet
  4. My Dignity
  5. RESETLUCK
  6. Ordinary Day…
  7. Ryuusei Voice
  8. Eternal Wish
  9. World End
  10. Reason why XXX
  11. Starting Again
  12. Daybreaker

1. Break your world

It’s great that Sayaka opens up the album with the 3rd A-side released for this era because it’s a favorite mine and really just blows down the doors.  I love her vocals floying around the anison rock arrangement and she just has a lot of power and identity here.  What an awesome song!!!

2. BLAZE MOMENT ~Guren Jouka~

The first new track, BLAZE MOMENT continues off from the power of the previous track and gives us another hard-hitting track.  This one seems to slightly break away from the anison feel but not too much.  I’m loving the extra synths found in this song and while it doesn’t hit quite as hard as “Break your world” it’s definitely fitting that it came right after!

3. Tsuioku no Scarlet

As a song I didn’t review because it was a joint single with Miyuki Hashimoto, Tsuioku no Scarlet was a great choice to include because I LOVED the sound of this track.  Almost like a fripSide song but not generic lol.  The anilectro sound just felt right and “BLAZE MOMENT” did a great job bridging to this song because it’s a solid song for Sayaka!  Definitely an early favorite!

4. My Dignity

After 3 epic songs, My Dignity switches moods by taking more a cuter route.  I’m not against when anison artists have genre shifts but damn Sayaka was this a kick in the stomach.  After that realization, I started to pay attention more to the song and like how Maon deals with these kind of songs, Sayaka does poppy songs nicely too.  Her voice is slightly squeakier which is meh, but the music is a nice groovy sound mixing technopop, dubstep, and 8bit all in one hit which didn’t override my system.  Good song overall.

5. RESETLUCK

For such a title, I thought it was going to be like “Tsuioku no Scarlet” but it’s actually a mid-tempo rock ballad.  I was happily surprised because I didn’t think she’d tackle such a style.  Sayaka though won me over with her vocals and the arrangement just felt right for her. I just love Sayaka having such a Western styled feel here and is another gem on this album!

6. Ordinary Day…

The next two tracks were B-sides starting with the one from “Reason why XXX”.  Ordinary Day… was such a shock that it was chosen over “Super Shiny Sensation!!!” because this song was just so forgetful and bland for me.  I mean the pipe organ was the only thing I remotely remembered about the tune.  Though I will say that it worked coming after “RESETLUCK” because this has a similar Western feel and the ending was nice, but otherwise…I don’t remember much else.

7. Ryuusei Voice

Then we get the B-side from “Starting Again” and it was just a good choice to have!  I mean compared to the other songs, this does come off a bit generic in almost all respects, but there’s something about it that I kind of enjoy?  The chorus sounds like a generic mess because of the easy to predict chords.  It could’ve been a lot faster and it would’ve been amazing!…oh well.  I guess I take my opinion back XD.

8. Eternal Wish

Back to new songs, Eternal Wish marks as the album’s ballad and has the works with mostly strings as a part of the arrangement with piano, bass, and other things.  I mean I guess it’s alright, but honestly it didn’t do anything for me, but Sayaka’s voice is just radiant here so that’s a great thing this song has going for.

9. World End

With how slow the album had got, it was time for a wake-up call and we got World End which is something that would’ve suited her debut album as it has a bright and flowing arrangement mixed with them anison chords which means I would be easily impressed!  It’s a really grand song for an album like this but honestly I’ve been wanting one of these and she did not disappoint!

10. Reason why XXX

Returning to some A-sides, we have Reason why XXX (her 2nd A-side released in the era and I remembered the anilectro from this one being so edgy and showed us that Sayaka had more power than what we had known prior.  It’s a busy song to get into, but it’s exciting and has a lot to it which is a good thing to have!  Great as an A-side and great to have here.

11. Starting Again

I was surprised when this single was passed over when “sympathetic world” was released, but it managed to join this album to make up for that.  After “Reason why XXX”, this A-side really seemed to be rather weak and honestly it’s true as the other two singles in this era have been super awesome.  It’s like “Ordinary Day…” where the song is nice to listen to but I can’t remotely remember much of it after I listen to it.

12. Daybreaker

Sayaka closes out the album with the title track and I kind of thought it was going to be an epic ending, but Daybreaker kind of takes a lighter route, almost a ballad.  I mean the song is ok and the unsettling chords in the verses are interesting, but there’s something that doesn’t quite click with me…but once Sayaka uses her chest voice and chorus kicks in, things are GOOD…interesting way to end the album, but like I said thought it’d be something a bit more powerful as the closing track.

Tracks Recommended

  • Tsuioku no Scarlet
  • RESETLUCK
  • Break your world
  • World End
  • Reason why XXX

Song of Avoidance

  • Ryuusei Voice

Coming into Sayaka’s sophomore album, Daybreaker is a bit more of the same of what we got from “sympathetic world”, her debut album.  She’s got a lot of great potential, but how her company is handling it is questionable.  The tracks recommended is the best of the best and the rest is a lot of miss and kind of bland settings (granted the B-sides were the worst offenders).  She’s growing some, but I hope she can avoid the bland settings.

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Sayaka Sasaki – Break your world January 23, 2013

Filed under: Sayaka Sasaki — solarblade @ 1:13 am

breakyourworld

Track Listing

  1. Break your world
  2. Super Shiny Sensation!!!
  3. Break your world (Instrumental)
  4. Super Shiny Sensation!!! (Instrumental)

1. Break your world

Kicking off the year, Break your world rushes in and really impresses me with some powerful vocals from Sayaka that we haven’t heard in a while.  It is a pretty typical anime intro which doesn’t surprise me one bit, but it’s one of the stronger ones I’ve heard from Sayaka since she debuted.  Yeah, I was actually impressed with this track!

2. Super Shiny Sensation!!!

Then the B-side comes in with it’s shockingly cute title and then listening to the song, I wasn’t expecting such an energetic arrangement and Sayaka is being cute without overdoing it.  It’s pretty loud and has a certain idol-like tone to it, but this is actually catchy and one of the fun songs in her discography!  I really liked this as well!

 

 

I really wasn’t expecting a lot from Sayaka after the last couple of singles, but she’s redeemed herself with Break your world which is bringing her back to her deeper vocals and heavier arrangements while Super Shiny Sensation!!! gives her a bit more openness with her energy and that ended up great!  This is her best single yet!

 

Sayaka Sasaki – Reason why XXX July 30, 2012

Filed under: Sayaka Sasaki — solarblade @ 8:48 am

Track Listing

  1. Reason why XXX
  2. Ordinary Day…
  3. Reason why XXX (off vocal)
  4. Ordinary Day… (off vocal)

1. Reason why XXX

It’s been a while since I’ve heard Sayaka and she comes back in an unusual way.  Reason why XXX is quite an enigma of a song because it has electro, 8bit, and rock tendencies which gives this wild arrangement.  I’m also surprised at the power of Sayaka’s vocals as well because they got a lot more heavier and has power behind it.  It’s varied and showcases the many good things about her.  Great A-side.

2. Ordinary Day…

I was really surprised when we came into Ordinary Day… because the song is a lot slower than the lead track but it isn’t a ballad by any means, it’s just a mid-tempo kind of song.  I’m not sure why but the song was extremely dragging the entire time and I was bored of it immediately after the first chorus.

 

 

I have to say, Reason why XXX might be a pretty good A-side from her but the single was dragged down with that boring B-side, Ordinary Day…  I mean it’s only a small step above “Starting Again” but I just don’t like that boreness!

 

Sayaka Sasaki – sympathetic world December 5, 2011

Filed under: Sayaka Sasaki — solarblade @ 6:24 am

Track Listing

  1. sympathetic world
  2. Lucky☆Racer
  3. Monochrome Dust
  4. universal sky
  5. Seisai no Ripieno
  6. Heaven’s gate
  7. snow ring
  8. Koi Hana
  9. fly away t.p.s
  10. Real Star☆
  11. Zzz
  12. Kimi to Hanaderu Story

Bonus CD Tracklist

  1. Arashi no Naka de Kagayaite
  2. Sousei no Aquarion
  3. Bokutachi wa Tenshi Datta with Hironobu Kageyama

1. sympathetic world

I’m surprised she’d kick things off with such a rockin’ track in sympathetic world.  She hasn’t done anything like this since her debut single so it’s great to see this back since she has a great voice for this style of music.  She powers through the song in such a strong tone and style that it makes me want to repeat it over and over again.  What a great way to begin the album I say!

2. Lucky☆Racer

Great to see her second A-side (the primary one) appear after “sympathetic world” but it might surprise first listeners who haven’t heard this song.  Unlike the opening track, Lucky☆Racer has a more explosive synth background here but we have the same conclusion that she definitely accels in the more powerful sounding songs because I loved this song when it was first released.  Very fast-paced and energetic here.  It’s definitely my favorite of all the A-sides she released.

3. Monochrome Dust

It’s pretty interesting that she added all the B-sides from the four singles representing the album (“Starting Again” is omitted) except “Gakkou Gakkou LIFE!!”.  I barely remember this song since it was off her debut single so that’s not good!  From the single it seemed like I liked it a lot actually.  However, it does seem to be less powerful than the previous two songs but I’m surprised this wasn’t placed after “sympathetic world” since they fit together one after another.  It’s quite good still but not as well as like I said compared to the previous two.

4. universal sky

Our next new song appears next and I’m surprised she’s keeping up with such a strong line of songs so far.  I felt that out of the four so far, this has the most anime-ish feel to it since it has the formula of one.  You know, guitars and strings.  I’m also continuing to enjoy Sayaka’s vocals since she hasn’t let up on the punch and timber of her voice…still powerful here! 

5. Seisai no Ripieno

Then we get into Sayaka’s debut A-side and still definitely is unique (then again all the A-sides she released were unique in ways).  It has been a while since I’ve heard this last and still is her darkest song in her discography not surprisingly.  It does have the animu sound like “universal sky” but isn’t as strong or vocally together like that song so this is pretty much a worse version of that.  It’s alright, but nothing epic.

6. Heaven’s gate

I’m starting to want change on the album and Heaven’s gate tries to pull a little unique sound out by being just purely rockin’ like “sympathetic world”.  I will say her voice sounds a little odd with the slight filters and such but she still retains that power in her voice.  Otherwise, I don’t remember this song very much.

7. snow ring

As the B-side from “fly away t.p.s”, snow ring is quite fitting for the season since it does have that wintry feel and such.  Also it’s the first rather slowish song on the album which is nice but because of that, I get bored very quickly with this song.  I wish there was something a little more memorable about this tune but I can’t really find one haha.

8. Koi Hana

Slowing things down further is Koi Hana and to me this song starts up a different side to the album which is the more cuter side to Sayaka.  I’m liking the simplicity of the ballad with mostly strings and piano but adding more oomph in the chorus.  I will say that I’ve been on the fence with Sayaka’s higher pitched cute vocals but this was alright.  A couple of minor flaws in tone actually.  Not the best new track of this album.

9. fly away t.p.s

The next three songs were previously released stuffs starting with Sayaka’s 3rd A-side released!  Kind of like “Lucky☆Racer”, this track is a bit more synth-based along with a lot of punch.  I must say though that this song is probably my second favorite best from the A-sides.  I’m loving Sayaka’s vocals a lot since they’re deep and kind of remind me of Nami Tamaki’s vocals.  Great song!

10. Real Star☆

Ick, the secondary A-side of her second single just doesn’t work for me at all on this album.  Her super cutesy vocals are just a sore to my ears and kind of just is a sore thumb on the album.  The whole sugary idol-like pop vibe just doesn’t work for Sayaka at all and really puts the song under the ground.  Worst track on the album.

11. Zzz

I guess I could say the same about Zzz as well since it’s just as cutesy and totally out of character for Sayaka this late on the album.  The music is a lot lighter than “Real Star☆” which sounds great, but the song is definitely not her once again and this was an A-side is quite embarassing.  I think this and the previous song are the worst on the album.

12. Kimi to Hanaderu Story

Closing the album is something that continues to have this cute sound but is more danceable than the previous two tracks.  I kind of wish she sung the song in her deeper tone but I’m already liking this song a bit more than “Zzz” and “Real Star☆”.  The arrangement kind of reminds me of either an H!P song or a Q;indivi/DAISHI DANCE thing but really isn’t since Lantis has songs that are like this.  Maybe a little girl next door?  Ehhh it’s alright but strange as a final song.

Bonus CD

1. Arashi no Naka de Kagayaite

I didn’t expect Sayaka to have a bonus disc at all with her debut but seeing as it’s covers for the most part interested me a bit.  I can’t remember if I ever reviewed Chihiro Yonekura’s song with other artists that reviewed it but the melody doesn’t seem familiar.  It seems to have a similar GUNDAM sound (then again the original was tied to the series).  Like most of the older GUNDAM themes, it still sounds rather dated to me but Sayaka sounds good through it.  It’s an alright cover.

2. Sousei no Aquarian

Now this cover sounds really familiar (then again I’m so used to AKIKO’s original and m.o.v.e’s cover of it).  Sadly, this version of the song is super awkward and suckish to listen to.  I mean it took out all of the good points of the song (the strong arrangement) and replaces it with piano, strings, and acoustic guitar.  I don’t really like Sayaka’s voice either in the cover either (cept for the quieter parts).  It’s just a diet-coke of the original…leaves a nasty taste afterwards.

3. Bokutachi wa Tenshi Datta with Hironobu Kageyama

It’s pretty rare to see someone covering an artist’s B-side but here we are with one where the original actually came from Hironobu Kageyama.  It doesn’t seem to sound as dated as “Arashi no Naka de Kagayaite” but it’s strange because both Hironobu and Sayaka sing together at various points though she’s the main singer which is great.  It’s a solid cover and is the best of the three tracks on the bonus disc.

Tracks Recommended

  • Lucky☆Racer
  • sympathetic world
  • universal sky
  • fly away t.p.s
  • Bokutachi wa Tenshi Datta with Hironobu Kageyama

Song of Avoidance

  • Zzz

It’s funny that Sayaka released her debut album before HIMEKA (and the latter has been performing a year before her!).  sympathetic world overall is a great album if you can get past the final three tracks which were oddly enough the cutesy songs which doesn’t work for her well.  I think if she does either energetic synth songs and/or rock songs she’ll do fine on her second era (which might have started with “Starting Again”).

 

Sayaka Sasaki – Starting Again October 28, 2011

Filed under: Sayaka Sasaki — solarblade @ 1:38 am

Track Listing

  1. Starting Again
  2. Ryuusei Voice
  3. Starting Again (Off Vocal)
  4. Ryuusei Voice (Off Vocal)

1. Starting Again

After the rather poor A-side in “Zzz” it’s great to have Sayaka coming back into something that’s more like “fly away t.p.s”.  It’s a little more cuter than said latter song but that’s alright because Sayaka’s vocals have toned down a lot from the last single and I’m so happy she realized she’s better using her normal vocals.  Starting Again is kind of catchy not gonna lie and she really made it come off as such as well.  I’m not sure it’s my favorite of the singles, but this is quite good.

2. Ryuusei Voice

The B-side though brings in Sayaka’s cutesy vocals which is alright since the song kind of needs that type of voice.  It’s a little sugary and a bit slower than “Starting Again” and overall sounds like an ending theme for me.  This song really does a good job showcasing her vocals since they sound really nice and even though the chorus makes them go up a notch, it’s still is a good track.

 

 

 

As this is Sayaka’s 5th and final single of her debut era, Starting Again does a great job picking up slack after that rather mundane single in “Zzz”.  Though I will say this single slightly mirrors “fly away t.p.s” but it’s still quite good as a package and that’s always a good thing.  Now this album of hers will be a weird one if both “Zzz” and “Seisai no Ripieno” are on it LOL.

 

Sayaka Sasaki – Zzz May 22, 2011

Filed under: Sayaka Sasaki — solarblade @ 9:40 am

Track Listing

  1. Zzz
  2. Gakkou Gakkou LIFE!!
  3. Zzz (Acappella Version)
  4. Zzz (Bossa Nova Version)
  5. Zzz (Instrumental)
  6. Gakkou Gakkou LIFE!! (Instrumental)

1. Zzz

Oh Sayaka, can you please stick to a style please?  When I first started up Zzz I was expecting something like her last single or her debut but I found that Zzz is pretty damn embarassing for Sayaka.  Unlike previous songs, this one is like a fantasy of a 5 year old seriously.  It’s like cute and with Sayaka also singing in that tune it gives off a cute and sugary vibe that I just didn’t really enjoy.  I mean it does give her more variety, but I was just hoping this wouldn’t be this single.

2. Gakkou Gakkou LIFE!!

Which bothers me more when I get into the single’s B-side.  Unlike the cute and slower vibes of “Zzz”, this track is definitely more cute and genki than before with electric guitar thrown in for some arranged variety.  It’s pretty damn awkward to be honest and Sayaka is seriously sounding like Koharu Kusumi during her solo days.  I really don’t know why it had to be done this way x.x;

3. Zzz (Acappella Version)

Cutting the song in half is an acappella version of the main song and while it’s a nifty try, you’d think she’d do a slightly better job and singing the song.  It still feels cute and her background stuff is kind of nice, but it’s not really helping to change my outlook of the song.

4. Zzz (Bossa Nova Version)

Back at full length of the song, we get a remix as well with the arrangement changed from something cutesy pop to something like the title implies.  Vocals are still nothing to really go over, but the arrangement is slightly better for the song though.  Maybe, this should’ve been how the original should’ve sound.

Uhm, Sayaka’s 4th single and it had to be a bust?!?  Seriously, this single is a total 180 from her previous three singles that it’s apparant that this was going to be an awkward single for her fans.  What was worse was that B-side….I rather erase that from my mind.

 

Sayaka Sasaki – fly away t.p.s April 4, 2011

Filed under: Sayaka Sasaki — solarblade @ 6:22 pm

Track Listing

  1. fly away t.p.s
  2. snow ring
  3. fly away t.p.s (off vocal)
  4. snow ring (off vocal)

1. fly away t.p.s

I guess it seems that Sayaka decided to choose something that’s a bit more euro-ish and synth-based for her next A-side, fly away t.p.s.  I will say her vocals match the style quite nicely even though she’s on the verge of yelling in many parts of the song.  She does give a pretty strong performance though and shows more power than she has been when compared to her two previous singles.

2. snow ring

I don’t think Sayaka has done a ballad yet in her career and this is the closest we have right now.  snow ring to me isn’t much of anything memorable for me since it’s more like an anime-based ballad, but it’s interesting for the synths and later on the addition of electric guitar.  I do wish she didn’t have vocal backups here since it brought down the enjoyment level.  Bleh, forgettable B-side.

As we’re on Sayaka’s third single, fly away t.p.s wasn’t exactly a step up after “Lucky☆Racer”, but it’s a valiant effort and I must say after a while the song would totally catch up and make ya a fan.  I will say that Sayaka’s B-sides have been quite mediocre at best and snow ring doesn’t change my mind around a bit.  Who knows, maybe “Zzz” will change things up xD